Today, June 23, 2016, is a historic day in my country, Colombia. More than 60 years of war have ended. I feel mixed emotions between happiness and doubt. My generation was born and grew up in war; facing injustice, displacement, death and fear.
For the first time peace between my Government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) is no longer just an empty dream. It has become a reality.
Hope is now stronger. The struggles have borne their fruits.
I am part of the numerous social, ecumenical and civil movements to build peace in my country, and at present I am far away from home, in Hong Kong S.A.R, using my personal experience and skills to help build peace and harmony between local people and migrant workers from all over Asia.
I see Colombia as an example for Latin America and the whole world. I am proud of our perseverance, our struggle and our commitment to leave behind the resentment and revenge and rebuild our present and future for our new generations.
The story of Colombia is being rewritten again. The war has ended!
It is our responsibility now, all of us, to stand firm, to support the agreement and continue building peace in our society. The challenges of the post-war era are huge. But I believe that our values and our motivation to transform our past will help us.
Small steps create great realities. We have lived in fear, in war. Let us not fear peace.
Honoring my country on this historic date, I give a special tribute to my compatriots with the National Anthem of the Republic of Colombia, which never made more sense to me than now:
Lyrics: Rafael Nuñez/ Music: Oreste Síndici.
“Oh, unfading glory!
Oh, immortal joy!
In the land of pains
Goodness now bears fruit!
“The dreadful night is over!
Spills the dawns of its invincible light.
“The sun shines on all alike,
Justice is freedom.”
Laura Nuñez Olaciregui
GMF International, Class of 2015-2017
Mission for Migrant Workers (MFMW)